In 2011, Interior Health (IH) completed a Master Site Plan (site plan) for Cariboo Memorial Hospital (hospital), which outlined the possibilities for future planning at the Williams Lake facility.
The site identified four clinical priorities for redevelopment – inpatient units, emergency services, ambulatory care and pharmacy.
With the site plan in place as a guide, IH began developing a concept plan for hospital redevelopment in summer 2013.
A concept plan is the first step in the capital planning process, and IH was able to undertake this step with the funding support of the Cariboo-Chilcotin Regional Hospital District (CCRHD).
The concept plan will address the four clinical priorities identified in the site plan, including the immediate- and long-term space and service requirements for these priorities. It also will address future site development, such as on-site parking and access to the hospital.
IH had originally planned to have finished the concept plan by summer 2014. However, the original schedule has been extended for several reasons. Chief among these is the desire to explore the provision of single-patient rooms exclusively in the redevelopment, an option that was not considered in the site plan.
IH states the extra time to explore this option was time well spent as it will better provide for quality patient care at the hospital. Additionally, IH experienced some staffing changes with the people most closely linked with this project, and that has also impacted timeframes.
At the end of the day, these factors have resulted in an extension to the anticipated completion of the concept plan. Service and space planning were completed this fall, and with that information in place, IH has been working to identify budget and funding considerations necessary to support redevelopment at the hospital.
It is anticipated the concept plan will be completed and submitted to the Ministry of Health in spring 2015. Once it’s submitted, any future capital planning and projects would be subject to the provincial prioritization process and the availability of capital funding.
IH knows the community wants redevelopment at Cariboo Memorial Hospital to move forward as quickly as possible. It is among the top priorities for the health authority.
However, it’s important to know that there are still several steps IH must take, in consultation with its partners at the Ministry of Health, before redevelopment can proceed – and, as with all capital planning, that does take time.